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Thursday, May 12, 2016

Red Flags: A Kate Reilly Mystery By Tammy Kaehler

by Cynthia Chow

Details on how to win a copy of this book at the end of the review.

NASCAR meets Hollywood in the latest engrossing mystery novel featuring professional race car driver Kate Reilly. Her ten-day trip in California for the Grand Prix of Long Beach begins unpleasantly with the murder of her cousin, Billy Reilly-Stinson. Kate isn’t exactly mourning the loss because ever since Kate reunited with the father she never knew, Billy had been an obnoxious thorn in her side. With a history of being involved in and investigating criminal activities within the race circuit, Kate shouldn’t have been too surprised that the president of the Grand Prix Association, as well as the owner of the race itself, would ask Kate to look into the murder.

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Nikki Gray is unlike any Grand Prix owner Kate has ever known. She totes her interchangeable but coordinated tiny dogs around in designer handbags while filming a reality television show. Her very LA-ness hides a cunning intelligence, though, and Nikki wastes no time in manipulating Kate into questioning the many associates who had reason to dislike her arrogant, womanizing, and larcenous cousin.

Kate’s need to continually prove herself is what drives her to achieve, an insecurity born out of the rejection by father and his very wealthy family. Their family having founded the bank that is her newest sponsor ensures that Kate will be unable to avoid hostile confrontations with them, but thankfully she will have the support of her much more affable Beaute sponsor and their association with the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. It is their financial backing that allows Kate to expand her NASCAR experience into the world of IndyCar racing, as well as participate in a charity celebrity-professional race. Coaching an Oscar-winning actress is definitely a new experience for Kate, not to mention meeting the interesting, and very interested, Sexiest Men Alive.

Image source: Poisoned Pen Press

Kaehler’s fourth book in the Kate Reilly Mystery series continues to be a standout with its completely original exploration of a woman competing in the world of professional car racing. The very technical aspects involved in taking turns at over 200 mph are made fascinating and compelling, as are the minutiae involved in the racing association itself. While previous entries have delved into Kate’s role as a woman competing in a man’s profession, here the author expands on her unasked-for responsibility of representing her entire gender in a sport that may never fully accept her.

The novel has fun with Kate’s introduction to Hollywood paparazzi, tabloids, and the obsession with celebrities, but at the core is Kate’s struggles with her family and how she still finds herself feeling rejected and unworthy. The reward for readers will be following Kate as she succeeds not only as a skilled driver, but in realizing that the only approval she needs comes from within. This is a unique mystery series as thrilling as it is intriguing, and readers will delight in the adventures of a resilient, funny, and strongly independent woman.

To enter to win a copy of Red Flags, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “flags,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen May 21, 2016. If entering via email please include your mailing address.

Use this link to purchase the book:

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).


  1. I've not been a series NASCAR fan, but a strong female character in a man's profession? That's a storyline I would be interested in reading.

  2. Sounds good! A different theme for sure! I want to read it! donamaekutska7@gmail.com

  3. We are NASCAR fans so this sounds fantastic! Not to mention that I love a good mystery :) wendyhines@hotmail.com